It has been a long 19 months for fans of Three Sams BBQ Joint (as well as for staff and owner Annette Jones), but the long wait appears to finally be near an end. Jones tells me all that is left before opening are the final health and fire inspections. If those happen this week, Jones says Three Sams will be ready to go next week. It will be a joyous return from a fire in March of last year that destroyed the building and left Jones wondering if she had what it took to start the rebuilding process. However, the Mabelvale community rallied to Three Sams to assist in the recovery and rebuilding effort, and Jones and her team have been selling barbecue out of a concession trailer in the parking lot in the meantime. We will certainly let you know as soon as we have an opening day.
The largest food festival in the city is coming this weekend with the seventh annual Main Street Food Truck Festival. Downtown will be packed with dozens of trucks and tens of thousands of people from 11 a.m. until 5 p.m. on Saturday. Basically, if you can think of a Central Arkansas food truck, they’re probably going to be there; here’s the full rundown of trucks you’ll be able to find. The festival will also have plenty of beer on hand as well as live music and entertainment. Of course, admission is free. My advice: get there a little early to get a parking space and beat the crowd, because it will get very congested very quickly in the middle of the festival.
Speaking of food trucks, The WunderBus is getting closer to opening its permanent location in Conway. Jacqueline and Auguste Forrester have started holding what they’re calling “super soft opens” at WunderHaus and hope to hold their ribbon cutting ceremony before the end of the month. WunderHaus is located in the old Central Station just a few blocks away from downtown Conway. Expect to find plenty of German comfort food and beer to match, as well as an expanded menu focusing on cuisine from all over Europe. Keep an eye on their Facebook page for more soft open events and an announcement on the restaurant’s grand opening.
Nominations are now open for the second class of the Arkansas Food Hall of Fame. From now until the end of October, you can fill out an online form to nominate your favorite longstanding restaurant from anywhere in Arkansas. Those nominations will then go before a panel of 13 judges, who will select the three inductees in this year’s class. Nominees must be owned and operated in Arkansas and have been open for at least 25 years. Last year, the judges selected Rhoda’s Famous Hot Tamales, Jones BBQ and Lassis Inn for the inaugural class. In addition to the three inductees, the judges will select a proprietor of the year, food-themed event of the year and people’s choice. You can submit as many nominations as you want for any of the categories. The nominating period will close after Oct. 31. All finalists will be announced next spring.
And we’re less than two weeks away from the most important annual food event in Little Rock. A few tickets are still available for the No Kid Hungry dinner at South on Main on Monday, Oct. 16. Tickets to the dinner are $175 and feature top chefs from Little Rock and beyond. All proceeds go to benefit No Kid Hungry, which works to end childhood hunger in Arkansas and the rest of the country.
Another major dinner event happening this month is the Blue Plate Special benefiting the Thea Foundation. We previewed the event this week and found out why it matters so much to the chefs who are participating.
And if you haven’t realized it yet, the month of October is truly packed with food events and new restaurant openings. We examined the spots we think you should be eating this month; take a look and order up!
Yellow Rocket Concepts has unveiled its specials for the month of October:
- Big Orange: Turkey Bacon Brie Burger and Chocolate Fudge Cake Shake
- Local Lime: Chicken, Spinach and Poblano Tamales
- Zaza: Curry-Cashew Chicken Salad
Ristorante Capeo’s weekly special is a fresh fish entree. The risotto of the week is made with mushrooms.
This weekend, Flyway Brewing’s special menu items are Buffalo Chicken Sliders and Buffalo Chicken Nachos.